CITIZENSHIP TEST PREPRATIONS
One of the most famous cases of changing nationality for the Olympics was Zola Budd, a South African runner who emigrated to the United Kingdom because there was an apartheid-era ban on the Olympics in South Africa. Budd was eligible for British citizenship because her grandfather was born there, but British citizens accused the government of expediting the citizenship process for her. Other notable examples include Kenyan runner Bernard Lagat who became a United States citizen in May 2004. The Kenyan constitution requires that one renounce their Kenyan citizenship when they become a citizen of another nation. Lagat competed for Kenya in the 2004 Athens Olympics even though he had already become a United States citizen. According to Kenya, he was no longer a Kenyan citizen, leaving his silver medal in jeopardy. Lagat said he started the citizenship process in late 2003 and did not expect to become an American citizen until after the Athens games. Basketball player Becky Hammon was not being considered for the United States Olympic team but wanted to play in an Olympic Games, so she emigrated to Russia where she already played in a domestic league during the WNBA offseason. Hammon received criticism from some Americans, including the US national team coach, even being called unpatriotic.